Linn County Sheriff Michelle Duncan reports on June 12, 2023, deputies responded to an animal neglect in the 40000 block of Rodgers Mountain Loop near Scio. Deputies received information multiple sheep were in various stages of neglect to include some who were deceased.
Deputies began an investigation and obtained permission from the uninvolved landowner, who was leasing the property, to access the property to evaluate the conditions of several sheep. Deputies quickly learned multiple animals have been neglected for a while. Health conditions varied with some having neglected and rotted hooves, causing pain to the point of having difficulty walking and standing. Some of the sheep had wounds on their chest from having to lay for extended periods. Deputies also found the sheep did not have access to potable water and the only water provided was full of algae and bugs. Some sheep were found deceased from the neglect.
Deputies seized 26 sheep, with 8 badly limping and unable to walk more than a few steps before laying down. Deputies continue to work closely with a vet in hopes of getting the remaining animals to recover. It will be a continuous process which takes time for each animal to fight back to good health but they most are making progress towards better health.
Deputies identified the owner as Brian Dietrich, 43, of Scio through their investigation. On July 11, 2023, Dietrich was arrested on 26 counts of Animal Neglect II and transported to the Linn County Jail. Deputies will continue to monitor the case as the animals progress.